Thursday, June 18, 2009

Lose Just 10% for Better Health

For people who are very overweight, the journey to get the extra pounds off seems never-ending. The good news is, you don’t have to worry about getting all the way down to your ideal weight in order to experience many of the benefits of weight loss. Evidence is now clear that losing just 10% of your body weight can reap huge benefits to your health! This means if you weigh 230 pounds you don’t have to shoot for an all-or-nothing 50, 60, or even an 80 pound weight loss (depending on your height and gender). Just 23 pounds off your frame can ease the pressure on your joints and your back, help your blood glucose response, bring your blood lipid levels down, and reduce your blood pressure. Of course, the more you lose, the better the results, but it’s a huge relief for most people to hear that a little bit of weight loss will do a whole lot of good.

Think about what 10% weight loss is for you. If it doesn’t sound very significant to drop 20-something pounds, check out this perspective to see how it would feel if you could instantly feel the difference. Imagine yourself carrying a 25 pound bag of dog food or cat litter: what a relief it is to get it out of the car and into the house and finally put it down. If you had to carry it up a flight of stairs it feels even more heavy!
So how differently would you feel, how much easier would you move, how much less out-of-breath would you be if you weighed 25 pounds less?
Think about carrying a gallon of milk in each hand: they weigh a total of 16 pounds. It doesn’t sound like a lot to lose from your body, but it feels like quite a struggle if you have to carry this 16 pounds around for a while. What would it be like to drop 16 pounds and go about your day without this extra weight?

The struggle to lose weight can feel like a long, uphill battle. You can make it easier by acknowledging all of your successes along the way. Pat yourself on the back for every five pounds you lose and set a new, smaller goal today. Work your way to losing just 10% of your body weight over the next six months. You’ll find it much easier and less stressful to reach a goal you’ve set, and reap the benefits that resonate throughout your mind and body!

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